Today, this generation has been introduced to many social media outlets. Social media content can range from tweeting about the lack of milk in the refrigerator to an abstract Instagram post on political views. From Instagram, to Facebook, to the newest sensation Tik Tok, we have access to the world by simply hitting the upload button.
However, this simple action can lead to professional consequences. Employers look at social media pages during the job application process.
In the professional world, employers are not allowed to ask personal questions such as an applicant’s religion or relationship status during interviews.
Seventy percent of employers will look at personal online accounts in search of a candidate’s personality, according to a 2017 survey conducted by Careerbuilder.com.
This means your next employer could potentially see that photo of you at Wibs last weekend. Alternatively, employers could also see your philanthropic volunteer work.
But how much of your social media presence should be taken into account by potential employers?
Careerbuilder also listed what social recruiters look for while looking over an applicant’s profile.
For instance, posting inappropriate or provocative posts, discriminatory comments related to race or gender, or frequently posting were not advised. The website did, however, advise us to promote one’s professional image, awards and accolades.
Although it is best to stray from culturally insensitive posts in general, what or how much we post on social media should not be for the interest of job recruiters.
This generation creates social media profiles as an outlet to share content with peers. It helps us stay connected and express our thoughts, creativity and opinions.
Social media apps like Twitter, Instagram and TikTok are for the enjoyment of friends and family. These apps are not meant for catering to employers, but rather a form of expression. It is for recreational purposes.
The alternative option to restricting what can be posted is making a private personal account.
This revelation results in the reduction of stress because of the power to choose who is able to view your content. However, the underlying mystery of why your account is private may concern a potential employer, as well as the restriction of publicly expressing yourself.
Furthermore, altering who sees your profile because it may hinder possible employment is tedious.
Additionally, choosing if applicants are suitable for a job just by looking at their social media can give a false sense of character.
If employers want to see what applicants are like outside of the office, it should be through the formality of an interview and their given application.
Potential employees may display themselves a certain way online, but it does not mean they act the same way in a professional setting. Their credibility can instead be proven with a quick call from their references.
Another way to prevent getting these false impressions is for job aspirants to create professional media accounts.
Instead of looking at recreational accounts, employers are directed to professional accounts on apps which are built to showcase professionalism, build reputation and network, such as LinkedIn. Apps like these are ideal when trying to scout for an individual’s professional reputation.
Personal online accounts should form a border which separate one’s business persona from their private life. Social media should not have the power to make a strong or misleading impression to professional recruiters.